I love this verse, but I find it so challenging at the same time. How easy is it to trust and lean on God with ALL our heart and in ALL our ways when we’re in times of uncertainty and challenge? Is it easier to look to worldly ‘things’ or others to make things better - our own fix-its, trying to work things out ourselves, taking control, or having a back-up plan, just in case? Are we able to trust God with everything, or just so far but not all the way?
I was reminded of a time at Ellel Scotland a few months ago. Peter, one of the directors there, was teaching a session on the faithfulness of God. He asked me beforehand if I could fall back into his arms to help demonstrate God’s faithfulness, and how we can trust Him and fall back knowing He will catch us. I said OK, tentatively, because I’d done it before, and I trusted Peter would catch me. But then he added something else. “I’m not going to tell you when I’m behind you. I’m going to walk away from you, and, when I come back I’ll touch your shoulder, and you’ll know I’m there. Then fall back, and I’ll catch you”.
When it was time for this demonstration he called me up. I felt unexpectedly nervous. Peter explained to the guests on the course what he was doing. He asked me to close my eyes, and hold my arms out to the side. He then walked away from me, and I was left alone in quietness. The few seconds felt like minutes, and fear began to creep in. I felt a touch on my shoulder, but wondered if I’d just imagined it? Was Peter really there? Was I going to end up on the floor? I began to fall back, but couldn’t really let go. I saved myself before reaching Peter’s arms. I looked around. He was there as he’d said he would be, but I hadn’t trusted.
It can be a bit like that with God sometimes, can’t it? Can I really trust? Have I heard Him? Is He really there? The Lord spoke to me at that moment, about childlike trust, about trusting Him with ALL my heart, even when I don’t see or understand that it’s safe, and He’ll catch me. But if I don’t fully let go and lean on Him with ALL of me, He can’t have His way in my life. If I hold on, or try to fix it, I’m stopping His best for my life, and I’m getting in the way.
‘The Eternal God is your refuge and His everlasting arms are under you’ (Deuteronomy 33:27). Can we let go, and let God? He knows all we’ve been through, and where our trust has been betrayed and broken by others. He knows our struggles.
Let’s choose to place our trust in Him afresh today, and ask Him to help us to trust and lean on Him with ALL our hearts, whatever challenges or difficulties we’re facing. He’ll make our paths straight, if we let Him. They may not look like the paths we imagined or expected, but, if they’re His ways, they’re the best for us.
Prayer: Abba Father, thank You that I’m Your child, and You love me just as I am. Forgive me where I’ve relied on trying to work things out and fix things myself. Please help me to trust afresh in You and Your faithfulness today. I choose to lean on You, to trust You with ALL my heart, to let go and to let You have your way. Thank You for who You are, and that You know what’s best for me. I love You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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